Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Reminder: Tomorrow is a Holy Day of Obligation and Friday Begins the Novena to the Holy Spirit before Pentecost

Tomorrow is the Solemnity of the Ascension of Our Lord, and a holy day of obligation.  We will hear the following Gospel from Luke 24:46-53:
 Jesus said to his disciples:
“Thus it is written that the Christ would suffer
and rise from the dead on the third day
and that repentance, for the forgiveness of sins,
would be preached in his name
to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.
You are witnesses of these things.
And behold I am sending the promise of my Father upon you;
but stay in the city
until you are clothed with power from on high.”

Then he led them out as far as Bethany,
raised his hands, and blessed them.
As he blessed them he parted from them
and was taken up to heaven.
They did him homage
and then returned to Jerusalem with great joy,
and they were continually in the temple praising God.
The novena in honor of the Holy Spirit is the oldest of all novenas since it was first made at the direction of Our Lord Himself when He sent His apostles back to Jerusalem to await the coming of the Holy Spirit on the first Pentecost. (There are nine days from the Friday after Ascension Thursday to the Vigil of Pentecost.)  It is still the only novena officially prescribed by the Church. Addressed to the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity, it is a powerful plea for the light and strength and love so sorely needed by every Christian.  The prayers can be found here, but I will be posting the daily novena prayers and invite everyone to pray for the gifts of Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel, Fortitude, Knowledge, Piety, and Fear of the Lord.

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